1001 Inventions Exhibition launched at the Glasgow Science Centre

The "1001 Inventions" Exhibition begins at the Glasgow Science Centre on the 23rd of October. The exhibition will be open till January 8, 2008.

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A ground-breaking interactive exhibition "1001 Inventions: Discover the Muslim Heritage in Our World" was opened on 23rd October at Glasgow Science Centre by Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon. The exhibition reveals some of the best kept secrets and inventions by ancient scholars and brings to life an overlooked "golden age" of scientific innovation.

1001 Inventions uncovers one thousand years of scientific and technological innovation by Muslim inventors, engineers, doctors, astronomers, and scholars from the 7th to 17th centuries.

The exhibition tells the story of innovations from the first flying machine, the first rocket, the first university, the first world globe, our numbers 1 – 9, algebra, astronomy and surgical instruments to everyday items like coffee, soap, the fountain pen, clocks, and the camera. The first official visitors included S2 pupils from Shawlands Academy.

Opening the exhibition, Deputy First Minister Nicola Sturgeon said :

"1001 Inventions is a fascinating and much-praised exhibition and I'm sure it will be a huge success here in Glasgow.

"It has the power to reach many audiences including schools pupils, students, academics and families across all our communities in Scotland.

"The exhibition is a fantastic opportunity to celebrate the bringing together of the two strands of Islamic art, philosophy and culture, and scientific endeavour.

"Cross-cutting science is worth nothing if we can't inspire our next generation of scientists to study science at school and at college, and to take up any of the fantastic and rewarding careers that a science education can lead to. The Scottish Government recognises this in the funding it provides to the Glasgow Science Centre and other Scottish Science Centres and is pleased to support an additional programme of school class visits to the 1001 Inventions Exhibition."

The exhibition is divided into seven zones – home, school, market, hospital, town, world and universe. Each zone features the contributions to science, medicine and technology by Muslim scholars.

The 1001 Inventions exhibition is currently on a UK tour, with the Glasgow Science Centre the only showing in Scotland. Over 250,000 people have already visited the exhibition in Manchester, Cardiff and Birmingham and it is expected about 50,000 will see the 1001 exhibition in Glasgow.

Professor Salim Al-Hassani, Emeritus Professor at University of Manchester and chairman of the Foundation for Science, Technology and Civilisation who developed the exhibition said:

"There is a widespread misconception that science and technology went into decline during the period described in our history books as the "dark ages".

"The 1001 Inventions Exhibition aims through understanding and education to challenge this myth and celebrate the fact that today's world owes much to the golden age of discovery and innovation in the Muslim World between the 7th and 17th centuries.

"This exhibition shows that Muslims have always shared their scientific heritage and that heritage provides a platform for many developments in today's world".

Dr Robin Hoyle, Director of Science at Glasgow Science Centre added:

"We aim to present science in an accessible and thought-provoking way. 1001 Inventions does exactly that and I'm sure that families and schoolchildren alike will find this exhibition thoroughly enjoyable."

"1001 Inventions:Discover the Muslim Heritage in Our World " runs for almost three months from Tuesday 23rd October to 8th January in the Science Mall (3rd floor) at the Glasgow Science Centre. It is open daily 10 am to 5pm (except Mondays from November). A special promotional leaflet for the exhibition offers a child free voucher with every paying adult from 24th October to 11th November.

Further information

Claire Gemson
Glasgow Science Centre
Direct line: 0141 420 5034

Notes to editors

The 1001 Inventions exhibition is supported in Scotland by the Scottish Government, Glasgow City Council, and the Waqf Charitable Trust. It has also received sponsorship from the UK government, international institutes and organisations. The Exhibition was developed by the Foundation for Science, Technology and Civilisation, in association with the University of Manchester, the Museum of Science and Industry in Manchester, Muslim Youth Foundation and the Dubai-based Muslim Heritage Consulting.

Relevant websites




Press Release

To read about the 1001 inventions exhibition in the Scotish media, click on the following links:

Link 1

Link 2

Exhibition Pictures

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Figure 1: left: Dr Kirk Ramsay Chief Executive of Glasgow Science Centre, Nicola Sturgeon Deputy First Minister of Scotland, Allen Stewart Depute lord Provost of Glasgow, Professor Salim Al-Hassani Chairman of FSTC, Lady Nuria Medina Garcia Coordinator La Casa Arabe, Madrid.

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Figure 2: Pupils from Glasgow school looking at a small model of Al-Jazari's Elephant Clock.

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Figure 3: Some of the guests walking around the exhibits.

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Figure 4: Deputy First Minister of Scotland, Nicola Sturgeon is delivering her inauguration speech at the Science Centre.

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Figure 5: Prof. Salim Al-Hassani, Chairman of Foundation for Science, Technology and Civilisation, is giving his speech.

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Figure 6: Depute Lord Provost of Glasgow opening the Civic launch at Glasgow City Hall.

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Figure 7: A corner of the City Chamber where the Civic lunch took place.

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Figure 8: Professor Salim Al-Hassani, chairman of the Foundation for Science Technology and Civilisation, presents Mrs Aziza Khand with 1001 Inventions book to acknowledge the support of the Waqf Charitable Trust in Scotland for bringing the 1001 Inventions Exhibition to Glasgow.

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Figure 9: Professor Salim Al-Hassani, chairman of the Foundation for Science Technology and Civilisation and Depute Lord Provost of Glasgow Councillor Allan Stewart (right) present Chief Executive of the Dubai-based International Holdings Group Mr Yaqub Yousuf (centre) with a special working innovations model to recognise the his and his company's contribution to the 1001 Inventions project over the last few years. The presentation took place at Glasgow City Chambers at a Civic Lunch to mark the formal opening of the 1001 Inventions Exhibition in Glasgow on 23rd October 2007.

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